Time lapse animations and other images of the Cedar Fire incident
Various HPWREN related
cameras captured images during the Cedar Fire, and to a lesser
degree the Paradise Fire, in the San Diego area in late October,
2003. This resulted in about 150,000 still images, many of which
were turned into DVD-quality MPEG2 time lapse animations. If you
have difficulty displaying the MPEG2 animations, please refer to
the note at the bottom of this web page.
Frame-by-frame original digital images, usually at much higher
quality than shown in the animations, were retained.
The animations generally have time stamps in them, but they are
in the corners and may not be visible if played back on a TV. In
some NTSC video camera iserver originating animations the time may
be off for an hour, when an Axis camera server did not execute the
switch from Daylight Savings Time during the night (the Mt. Woodson
and Mt. Laguna Observatory camera servers were affected by this).
An initial set of animations was shown at an OES/Sheriff's press
briefing on the 30 October 2003 off a DVD player. About twenty DVDs
were produced for this event and handed out by the Sheriff's
Department to the press and others. The MPEG2 animations on the
DVD title and credits
This Mt. Woodson animation is from 704x480 pixel interlaced
images of a pan/tilt/zoomable video camera that is remotely
controlled. Most of the first night is shown, starting at
2140 on the 25 October 2003 to 0442 on the 26 October 2003.
Note that the Daylight Savings Time adjustment did not
happen in this animation. The animations starts by pointing
approximately east from the Mt. Woodson based camera, until
a CDF fire captain of the CDF Ramona Air Attack Base remotely
re-pointed it into a more of a south-east direction.
This Mt. Woodson animation is from 704x480 pixel
interlaced images of a pan/tilt/zoomable video camera that
is remotely controlled. The animation starts around 0442
on the 26 October 2003 and ends at about 1247 on the 26
October 2003 as a result of a power loss in the west Ramona
area. Some of the daytime imagery is of the Paradise fire.
The frame rate is about one every ten seconds. NOTE: The
time stamps in the animation is off by an hour until 09:32:22
when the Axis camera server finally realized that Daylight
Savings Time is over.
The animation from a west-pointing camera on Mt. Laguna
is downsampled from >3000 progressive-scan images of 1288x968
pixels of a fixed IQeye3 digital still network camera. The
frame rate is about one every twelve seconds. The animation
is from 28 October 2003, and shows the plume building up
over the Cuyamacas and heading towards Mt. Laguna, starting
around 0635 and ending around 1720. Note that the highest
mountain in the background is Cuyamaca Peak at a slightly
more that 6500 feet and a distance of a little more than
11 miles from the camera.
Added 2 December 2003
A 19 November
2003 Landsat 5 image, provided by the USGS, illustrates recent
Added 1 December 2003
A stitched-together 360 degree view from the 28 October 2003
shows the fire approaching at 15:00 and 15:10, as seen from Mt.
Laguna. I.e., the two sets are ten minutes apart.
A full resolution 17+MB TIFF
version as well as a low resolution
15:15 , and
QTVR versions are also available. The collated images are a
result of four IQeye3 cameras creating progressive-scan images of
Added 24 November 2003
Animations of images related to the
2002 Pines Fire
Added 18 November 2003
wrmn-20031026.mpg (151.9MB) from west Ramona on the 26 October
2003 is downsampled from progressive-scan images of 1288x968 pixels
of a tripod-mounted IQeye3 digital still network camera pointing
east, and briefly south towards the end of the animation. The frame
rate is about one every twelve seconds, but displayed three times per
Added 17 November 2003
MW-20031026_021741-025601.jpg is a 225 image "film strip" time
series, about 7.4 megabytes in size, from Mt. Woodson on 26 October
2003, between 02:17:41 and 02:56:01. It starts right when a CDF
fire captain remotely changed the camera azimuth from pointing about
east to a more south-easterly view. The gap between the images is
about 10 seconds. The image expands to about 233 megabytes during
JPEG decompression. The image size is 10800x7200 pixels, appropriate
for 36" times 24" prints at 300dpi. Note that the time stamps in
the images are off by an hour, due to the camera server missing the
switch from Daylight Savings Time.
Added 13 November 2003
L7 includes a clickable Landsat7 map of the southern California
fires from 26 October 2003, provided by the USGS. The original
single full TIFF image size was about 1.6 gigabytes.
calif_merge_albersm-cp.jpg is a full scale excerpt of the San
Note: the stripes in the full sized images are due to
some technical issues with the image)
Added 9 November 2003
MLObservatory_20031025.mpg (85.9MB) and
are animations from a pan/tilt/zoomable HPWREN camera located
at SDSU's Mt. Laguna Observatory It starts at Saturday, 25 October
2003, at 2347, to 1304 on Sunday, 26 October 2003. During Sunday
the timestamp is off by an hour since the Axis camera server did
not switch out of Daylight Savings Time. The frame rate is one
about every ten seconds. This animation is is at 704x480 pixel
resolution of interlaced images from an NTSC camera.
MtLaguna-West_20031029.mpg (109.8MB) Mt. Laguna animation is downsampled
from progressive-scan images of 1288x968 pixels of a fixed IQeye3
digital still network camera pointing West. The frame rate is about
one every twelve seconds. The animation is from 29 October 2003,
and shows a waterfall (smokefall) into the Anza Borrego Desert.
MtLaguna-North_20031029.mpg (104MB) Mt. Laguna animation is downsampled
from progressive-scan images of 1288x968 pixels of a fixed IQeye3
digital still network camera pointing North. The frame rate is
about one every twelve seconds. The animation is from 29 October
2003, and shows a waterfall (smokefall) into the Anza Borrego
np-20031026.mpg (73.2MB) is from a pan/tilt/zoomable HPWREN
camera located at a private house on North Peak from Sunday, 26
October 2003 from 0542-1305. That house (and camera/etc.) burned
during the incident, but long after the animation stops. The animation
stops around the time when power was lost in the Ramona area, as
that is where the images were collected. This animation is is at
704x480 pixel resolution of interlaced images from an NTSC camera.
The frame rate is about one every twelve seconds.
Added 8 November 2003
Some full resolution
still images of the CDF Ramona Air Attack Base from the early
morning of 26 October 2003 were added.
http://hpwren.ucsd.edu/Photos/20031026/ has some more images
that were taken with a handheld digital camera, also from early
morning, 26 October 2003.
Added 4 November 2003
cdfrmnaab-20031026.mpg (99.6MB) is from an HPWREN camera located
at the Ramona CDF Air Attack Base. The images are from Sunday, 26
October 2003. The animation is downsampled from progressive-scan
frame images of 1288x968 pixels of the fixed IQeye3 digital still
network camera. The frame rate is about one every twelve seconds.
The animation shows every frame three times, for 10 fps. The animation
starts at about 06:15, about 15 minutes after the Air Attack OV-10
took off for the Cedar fire. Multiple S-2 tankers have also already
left and are in the air by the time the animation starts. The
animation shows a CDF helicopter taking off during the animation.
The animation stops when power was lost for a few hours at the
HPWREN backbone site on Mt. Woodson.
Note related to MPEG2 computer playback:
The animations are MPEG2 video-only (no audio track) in a DVD
compatible format. With a DVD writer and authoring software, they
can be written onto DVD and played back on a TV with a DVD player.
It is best to download an animation in its entirety, then play
Information from an SDSC staff member about an example of getting
an MPEG2 decoder for Windows
"The system has to have an MPEG2 decoder (codec) installed, this is
usually installed if the PC has a DVD player. It is installed with
WinDVD or any other DVD player application such as PowerDVD.
I could not play it until I installed WinDVD to get the codec.
You can download a trial version of windvd from www.intervideo.com which
will only work for 15 days but will permanently install the codec which
In Unix, mplayer is able to decode the MPEG2 files.
HPWREN is a multi-institutional and interdisciplinary project, led
by University of California San Diego researchers at the San Diego
Supercomputer Center and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography.
The HPWREN project is based on work sponsored by a research grant
of the National Science Foundation and its CISE/ANIR division under
Grant Number ANI-0087344. If you use HPWREN data from this data
set, you must give a credit reference to the National Science
Foundation Grant Number ANI-0087344, and the University of California,
HPWREN acknowledges significant collaboration of the San Diego
Sheriff's Department, the California Department of Forestry and
Fire Protection, and the San Diego State University, among others.
Any opinions, findings and conclusions, or recommendations expressed
here are those of the authors/researchers and do not necessarily
reflect the views of the National Science Foundation or other
affiliated collaborating entities.
~ university of california, san diego ~ © 2000 ~